Some Moments Visited on Homecoming Weekend.
Dave and Ellen Ballinger, Brian and Deb McNamara,
and Frank and Beth Hall at 2010 Reunion Dinner.
The Lovely Ladies who put up with their
Kappa Sigma husbands.
David Ballinger (center) congratulates 2010 Sig Cup Scholarship recipients
Brother Logan Harvey, a senior Mechanical Engineering major from Hope, IN., and
Brother Matthew Dean, a senior majoring in Accounting and Finance from Scottsburg, IN
Undergraduate Brothers joined Alumni at
2010 Reunion Dinner
House Corporation President Ryan Estes
chairs the 2010 Annual Business Meeting.
Mitch Rhoads (center) with Bill and Sue Vecsey
at 2010 Reunion Dinner.
Assistant Professor of Finance, TU Ketner School of Business
What is your background and what do you consider has shaped you as a person?
I was born on March 19th, 1976 in Karlovy Vary (Carlsbad in English), Czechoslovakia (now part of the Czech Republic). I lived under a communist party rule in socialism (vast majority of all businesses were state-owned) until 1989 when the regime collapsed. I was 14 at the time, just before entering high school. Having lived in Czechoslovakia under communism for 14 years, I am a passionate defender of freedom and liberty.
What education and career path did you follow?
After graduating from high school in 1994 I entered a University in Prague where I enrolled in the statistics major. I had been playing tennis since I was 5, and love the game and competition. So I interrupted my studies after 1 year and spent the 1995/1996 school year devoted full time to tennis. I achieved a world amateur ranking, but I didn't have enough success to keep pursuing tennis as my career. Instead I went back to college at Northwood University, in Midland, Michigan in November 1996, on a full-time tennis scholarship and stayed there until I graduated in 2000. Despite majoring in marketing and management, I discovered my passion for economics, and soon moved to pursue a Masters degree in economics at Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo, Michigan, and then went on to earn my Ph.D. in 2008 at Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan. While working on my advanced degrees, I taught economics at Northwood, at Delta College, Saginaw, Michigan, and at MSU. In summer of 2009, I started with TU and moved to Angola. At Trine so far, I am teaching mostly Finance classes, and some Economics classes. Much of my teachings come from real life experiences.
How did you meet your wife?
Erin and I met at Northwood University in 1997, and married in 2000, right after we both graduated. Erin is originally from Union City, Michigan, and she also plays tennis. She has worked as a tennis pro, then a loan officer, and finally a branch manager at a credit union. She is currently at home with our 1 year old baby daughter, Mikaela.
What do you do for fun and relaxation?
On the weekends, I love to spend time with Erin and Mikaela, and our eight year old black Lab named Lucky. We are active in outdoor activities and always work hard to stay fit. I also like watching soccer, and playing tennis. From time to time I play soccer, and also have actively played ice hockey in the past. During summer vacations from teaching, I still play competitive tennis in the Czech Republic and Germany.
What milestones in your life so far give you special pride?
Besides learning hard lessons while growing up under communism, I took many lessons in character and discipline from athletics. From my college tennis career, I take a lot of pride in my team finishing 4th in the nation in NCAA division II in 1998. As a senior in 2000, I received a NCAA Division II award for National Player of Year 2000 and the Arthur Ashe Award for Leadership and Sportsmanship. In 2007, I was inducted into the Northwood University Athletic Hall of Fame. These recognitions give me pride but the best benefits from sports are the quieter internal strengths and traits that hard work and competition inspire.
Why did you become Faculty Advisor for Kappa Sigma, and what do you hope to accomplish?
Dating back to my undergraduate studies at Northwood University, I have always felt that there was something important missing in my life. At Northwood, I worked very hard at studying and at athletics, but I did not feel like I was getting a complete, well rounded experience. I never joined any student organizations or fraternity while at college. From my perspective now as a professional and a parent, I realize I probably missed some important things at college. So I want to do my best in helping Trine students experience the non-classroom part of college education that I myself missed when I was a student. Part of that is the experience and growth that comes from being in a fraternity. I think I have a lot to offer to the Kappa Sigma brothers at Trine in terms of both my social and professional experience that I can pass on, while I can also grow as a person, father, professional, and advisor. From my involvement so far, the Kappa Sigma brothers at Trine strike me as young people with a lot of potential; they are eager to not only work on their own development, but also to help others succeed and take personal pride in nurturing the new house and mentoring others. And their alumni support is very solid and proactive. I am excited to be a part of this fine group and have the opportunity to help the brothers uncover and fully develop their potential.